Yankees remind everyone they still are loaded

Jackie Robinson's 75th anniversary may be only hope to save season


This Yankees’ offseason, literally to the final minutes before their 2022 opener Friday, played out as if the franchise were trying to see just how much it could dismay and disappoint its fan base. 

The Yankees didn’t sign Freddie Freeman. They shunned the greatest free-agent shortstop class ever. And in the final hours before Gerrit Cole delivered the first pitch against the Red Sox, general manager Brian Cashman announced a failure to reach an extension with the best, most popular player on the team — Aaron Judge. 

This served as a kind of tic-tac-toe of infuriating the loyalist; verification for those who believe Hal Steinbrenner’s Yankees are averse to fully flexing their financial might. 

But over nearly four hours and 11 innings of what proved to be an uplifting 6-5 Yankees triumph Friday, the club demonstrated both that it did not actually sit idly during the offseason and that it does have layers of talent on the most ridiculed $250 million-plus payroll ever. 

“A lot of guys on our side obviously contributed,” manager Aaron Boone said. 

Anthony Rizzo, whom the Yankees gave a two-year, $32 million pact to return, counterpunched a three-run Cole top of the first with a two-run homer off Boston ace Nathan Eovaldi in the bottom half that instantly got the Yankees back into this game. 

That opened the scoring. 

Anthony Rizzo crushed a two-run home run during the Yankees' win over the Red Sox.
Anthony Rizzo crushes a two-run home run during the Yankees’ win over the Red Sox.
Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post

Josh Donaldson, who came with a two-year, $50 million commitment in a trade with Minnesota, snaked an RBI single up the middle to score Isiah-Kiner Falefa (who was in the trade with Donaldson) in the 11th inning. 

That closed the scoring and gave the Yankees the win.